This is the best time for starting a new career or developing in-demand skills.

During the years I have been studying several online courses on an ongoing basis, and I can confirm that they have helped me to develop my business and work successfully with innovation projects.

Nowadays, it can be difficult for a new student to choose the right courses, since there are so many. Therefore, I decided to create this post and share my experience in order to help them narrow down the list. Please notice that I have included Entrepreneurship Specializations that include courses on Innovation.

You have the possibility of setting reminders to study from within the platform. This means that you can choose the days and times you prefer to study the course. Don’t forget to download the Coursera app so you can study while you travel.

COURSES AND SPECIALIZATIONS

You can register to study a whole specialization or only the individual courses that are included in the specialization.
I have included the link to each course.

There is a brief description of each course which you can access when you click on each link.


INNOVATION MANAGEMENT (ERASMUS UNIVERSITY ROTTERDAM)
Week 1 – Introduction
Week 2 – The Adoption of Innovations
Week 3 – The Fuzzy Front-End: Creativity
Week 4 – The Fuzzy Front-End: Idea Management
Week 5 – Strategy: Innovation Strategy
Week 6 – Strategy: Portfolio Management
Week 7 – Execution: Implementing Innovation
Week 8 – Execution: Teams and Networks
Week 9 – Exam

Review

This is a great course! Innovation Management and Strategy are very important and also the ability to implement innovations. Enroll Now!

ENTREPRENEURSHIP: LAUNCHING AN INNOVATIVE BUSINESS SPECIALIZATION (UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND, COLLEGE PARK)
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Course 1: Developing Innovative Ideas for New Companies: The First Step in Entrepreneurship
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Week 1: Introduction to Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Week 2: Entrepreneurial Mindset, Motivations, and Behaviors
Week 3: Industry Understanding
Week 4: Customer Understanding and Business Modeling

Course 2: Innovation for Entrepreneurs: From Idea to Marketplace
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Week 1: Introduction
Week 2: Customer Discovery and Validation
Week 3: Product Understanding and Marketing
Week 4: Prototyping and Testing
Week 5: Building a Team

Course 3: New Venture Finance: Startup Funding for Entrepreneurs
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Week 1: The Early Stage Investment Landscape
Week 2: Sources of Capital for the Early Stage Company
Week 3: Getting Funded – Steps in the Funding Process
Week 4: Pitching Investors and Closing the Round

Course 4: Entrepreneurship Capstone
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Week 1: Defining the Opportunity
Week 2: Discovering the Customer
Week 3: Understanding Customers
Week 4: Creating the Marketing and Sales Strategy
Week 5: Refining the Solution

Review

I really loved this specialization, especially the first course where Dr. James V. Green teaches the entrepreneurial mindset, motivations, and behaviors. He walks you through one of the books that he wrote which is amazing! Here is the link to his page on Amazon where you can see all of his publications.

Furthermore, there are not so many books that talk about the entrepreneurial mindset so this is a true treasure! His lectures are outstanding and he really knows how to engage the students.

The specialization is of great value and I would recommend everybody to take it.
Course 2 covers many topics like building a team and this is very important especially in the early stages of a startup. Selecting the right people can make a lot of difference and can save you a lot of time and trouble.
Course 3 talks about how to get funding and pitch to investors and these things are easier said than done. Those that have pitched to investors can say how hard it is to narrow down the business ideas and deliver a compelling presentation with successful results.
The final part of the specialization is the Capstone project. It is recommendable to do the capstone project in any specialization since you learn a lot.

INNOVATION: FROM CREATIVITY TO ENTREPRENEURSHIP SPECIALIZATION (THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS AT URBANA-CHAMPAIGN)
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Course 1: Strategic Innovation: Building and Sustaining Innovative Organizations
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Week 1: Course Orientation. Module 1: Finding Your Innovation Sweet Spot: Crafting a Great Value Proposition
Week 2: Module 2: There Is More to a Product Than Just Function: Assessing Industry Trends
Week 3: Module 3: Developing Winning Products: Sometimes Less Is More
Week 4: Module 4: Executing Innovative Business Models: The Whole Is Bigger Than the Sum of Its Parts. Course Conclusion

Course 2: Strategic Innovation: Managing Innovation Initiatives
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Week 1: Course Orientation. Module 1: Managing Innovation
Week 2: Module 2: Understanding & Responding to Different Types of Innovations
Week 3: Module 3: Teams and Innovation
Week 4: Module 4: Planning & Evaluation & Innovation Across Organizations

Course 3: Creativity Toolkit I: Changing Perspectives
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Week 1: Course Orientation. Module 1: Being Creative
Week 2: Module 2: Raw Materials and End Products
Week 3: Module 3: Tools for Thinking
Week 4: Module 4: The Creative Journey

Course 4: Creativity Toolkit II: Creative Collaboration
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Week 1: Course Orientation. Module 1: Pitching Ideas
Week 2: Module 2: Evaluating Ideas
Week 3: Module 3: The Allure of Team Creativity
Week 4: Module 4: Breaking the Barriers to Team Creativity

Course 5: Entrepreneurship I: Laying the Foundation
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Week 1: Course Orientation. Module 1: Introduction to Entrepreneurship
Week 2: Module 2: Understanding the Market
Week 3: Module 3: Building the Team
Week 4: Module 4: Finding Customers

Course 6: Entrepreneurship II: Preparing for Launch
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Week 1: Course Orientation. Module 1: Earning Revenue
Week 2: Module 2: Financial Forecasting
Week 3: Module 3: Raising Capital
Week 4: Module 4: Managing Growth

Course 7: Innovation: From Creativity to Entrepreneurship Capstone
Enroll Now!

Week 1: Module 1: Capstone Course Overview and Innovation Review
Week 2: Module 2
Week 3: Module 3
Week 4: Module 4


Review

This specialization gives you the necessary tools and methods to become more creative. As an Entrepreneur, you will have to be both innovative and creative. As the saying goes “Practice Makes Perfect!”
Please notice that course 7: Week 2, 3, and 4 have no title. It is shown like this on the Coursera platform but there is a clear description of the contents.

INNOVATING WITH THE BUSINESS MODEL CANVAS (UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA)
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Week 1: Focusing on Profitability and Growth
Week 2: How do you focus your capabilities and organization to maximize profitability?

Review

The business model canvas is one of the key things you should have ready when starting your business and it is good to get feedback, do research, and test your assumptions. This course will give you a very good understanding.

DESIGN THINKING FOR THE GREATER GOOD: INNOVATION IN THE SOCIAL SECTOR (UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA)
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Week 1: Design Thinking Fundamentals
Week 2: Before You Begin, and Asking “What Is?”
Week 3: A Mindset For Innovation, and Asking “What If?”
Week 4: Asking “What Wows?” and “What Works?”

Review

Design Thinking is one of the top skills nowadays. It’s everywhere.
It is a methodology that helps you work with your team and guides you with key questions you need to ask yourself when seeking a solution to a problem.

STARTUP ENTREPRENEURSHIP SPECIALIZATION (TECHNION – ISRAEL INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY)
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Course 1: Cracking the Creativity Code: Discovering Ideas
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Week 1: What is Creativity?
Week 2: Zoom in, Zoom out, Zoom in
Week 3: Creativity in practice
Week 4: Reinventing yourself

Course 2: From Idea to Startup
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Week 1: Think Ahead Backward
Week 2: Validate Your Idea
Week 3: Visualize the Business
Week 4: Sustain the Business

Course 3: Innovation Career Lessons from a Master
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Week 1: Introduction
Week 2: Strategy, Action & Resistance
Week 3: Ecosystem, Team & Simplicity
Week 4: Summary & Final Assignment

Course 4: Action-Driven Business Plan: From the ‘Classroom’ to the World
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Week 1: Welcome & Make a Plan
Week 2: Zoom Out
Week 3: Zoom In
Week 4: Shape the Business Design – part 1

Review

This is a very good specialization. For example, Innovators must have the ability to zoom in and zoom out. They have to take a look at a problem closely but also in relation to other factors.
The specialization also talks about sustainability.

A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH TO INNOVATION MANAGEMENT (UNIVERSITÀ BOCCONI)
Enroll Now!

Week 1: The Innovation Decision
Week 2: Theory and Data for Innovation Management
Week 3: Data Analysis
Week 4: Advanced Tools for Innovation Management Decisions
Week 5: Final Project

Review

Here is another course on Innovation Management but using a scientific approach. It is a good course to learn about tools and use data analysis for better results. For those that love data analysis, this course is for you!

MANAGING INNOVATION AND DESIGN THINKING SPECIALIZATION (HEC PARIS)
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Course 1: Boosting Creativity for Innovation
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Week 1: Module 1: Anatomy of creativity
Week 2: Module 2: The Importance of Positive Effect for Creativity
Week 3: Module 3: Shaping Your Creative Environment
Week 4: Module 4: Introducing You to Step-by-Step Instructions

Course 2: Strategic Management of Innovation
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Week 1: Module 1: Technological Innovation
Week 2: Module 2: Types and Patterns of Innovation
Week 3: Module 3: Increasing Returns
Week 4: Module 4: Timing of Entry and Protecting Innovation

Course 3: Organizational Design and Management
Enroll Now!
Week 1: Module 1: Evaluating your idea
Week 2: Module 2: Managing people
Week 3: Module 3: Designing organizations
Week 4: Module 4: Re-designing for growth

Course 4: Design Thinking
Enroll Now!

Week 1: Module 1: Overall approach to Design Thinking
Week 2: Module 2A: Inspiration-Data Collection
Week 3: Module 2B: Inspiration-Data Analysis
Week 4: Module 3A: Ideation
Week 5: Module 3B: Implementation
Week 6: Module 4: Organizational setting for Design Thinking

Review

This specialization goes through different types of innovation. It also focuses on technological innovation which is so important and not so easy taking into consideration the acceleration of technologies and their complexity.

FINANCIAL TECHNOLOGY (FINTECH) INNOVATIONS SPECIALIZATION (UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN)
Enroll Now!

Course 1: The Future of Payment Technologies
Enroll Now!

Week 1: Introduction and What is FinTech?
Week 2: Digital Wallets
Week 3: Credit Card Innovations
Week 4: Payment Technology in Emerging Markets

Course 2: Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Explained
Enroll Now!

Week 1: Introduction
Week 2: Introduction to Blockchain and Crypto
Week 3: Blockchain as an Asset
Week 4: Blockchain as a Business

Course 3: Raising Capital: Credit Tech, Coin Offerings, and Crowdfunding
Enroll Now!

Week 1: Introduction and What is FinTech?
Week 2: What is CreditTech?
Week 3: Crowdfunding & ICOS
Week 4: Smart Banking: FinTech Banks and Banking-as-Service

Course 4: Innovations in Investment Technology: Artificial Intelligence
Enroll Now!

Week 1: Introduction
Week 2: Robo Advising
Week 3: Stock Selection & Asset Management
Week 4: Big Data

Review

This is a very extensive specialization that covers many topics that are necessary to know in order to take advantage of these financial technologies and also to prepare for the present and the future. If you are a decision-maker, this specialization will give you a good base to make better decisions and participate in discussions with your colleagues and customers.
Now is the time to start learning about these technologies when we are still going through transformations in many industries.
The specialization also goes through different use cases that can come in handy. It is always good to have examples.
It is a must-read for anybody, even for those that do not work directly with FinTech.

CONCLUSION

Take advantage of these amazing courses and specializations today! Study at home enjoying the company of your pet. Or take your laptop, iPad, or iPhone with you and choose your favorite coffee shop. Coursera’s platform is easy to use and very popular. Get your certification, share it on your social media channels, and become more competitive!


Written by Veronica Chiaravalli

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Veronica Chiaravalli is Founder, CEO, and CRO (Chief Robotics Officer) at Emerging Technologies Sweden. She's a C-Level Space Executive, Visionary Leader, Space Entrepreneur, Exponential Innovator, Visionary Exponential Entrepreneur, IIEC-Certified Trainer, IIEC-Certified Executive, IIEC-Certified Expert in IoT, IIEC-Certified Expert in Immersive Technologies, and IIEC-Certified Expert in Exponential Technologies offering online services and solutions to global grand challenges. Among the services she offers are customized and innovative online training programs, research, and innovation work with Space projects, speaking services, 3D Artist Cert. Training, and articles on Space, emerging technologies, exponential technologies, innovation, and visionary leadership. Besides her work at Emerging Technologies Sweden, she is also working with Space Projects as a volunteer for The Mars Society and The Moon Society. She is also one of the Editors of the upcoming book: "A Pioneer's Guide to Living on Mars" written by Peter Kokh. Her areas of expertise are: Space, Immersive Technologies, Augmented Intelligence, IoT, Robotics (Human-Robot Space Exploration & Innovation), Digital Twins, Emerging Technologies, and Exponential Technologies. She spoke at Purdue University several times on entrepreneurship, her work with global challenges (gender & knowledge gaps), and the future impact of emerging technologies and exponential technologies. Visit her website at http://www.exponentialtechs.com Feel free to connect with her via LinkedIn. Here is the latest interview: https://ebullient.com/podcast/veronicachiaravalli/ Click on the right where it says Watch Video.

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